“Why should anyone care what you think?” “Is there a point there — anywhere?” “Grow up! No, wake up!” Scary comments like these will echo through the halls Saturday at First United Methodist Church in Duluth. Halloween will be a day for seeing incivility in action and understanding the importance — even the imperative — of addressing it and overcoming it. Everywhere we look these days, people seem to be putting on incivility as their costume of choice.
It’s not just what you say. It’s also how you say it. For a dozen years, that has been the slogan — you might even call it the headline — for Speak Your Peace: The Civility Project of the Duluth Superior Area Community Foundation. Established in 2003 to address concerns about the incivility that was chilling civic engagement, the program has worked locally, nationally and globally to help communities grow stronger and accomplish goals by raising the level of civility in public discussion. One of the most important forms of public discussion is print.